I is for, well, I.
- I want to encourage others to challenge themselves.
- I want to challenge myself to get back to writing again.
- I want to share my blog with the world.
- I want to find more blogs I love reading.
The team's theme of the April Blogging from A to Z Challenge this year is:
ACCOMPLISHING YOUR DREAMS, AND THE DUALITY OF 22
~Jayden R. Vincente
As we work through our A to Z, we want to remain steadfast in our objective. We always want to remember what we're working toward, and how we're going to get there.
~Jayden R. Vincente
When I sat down to write this post, I was drawing a complete blank. I had no idea what I was going to write about. "Shoot," I said to myself (or words to that effect), "I'm never going to figure out something to say."
And just like that, I had it.
You have a blog post due that your readers are dying to read, and you can't get it out of your head and into a text block. When that happens, do this: open a new text document in the editor of your choice and start typing. Anything, whether it's relevant to your blog or yourself or not. Anything at all. Just keep moving, keep throwing words on the page. You'll figure out which ones to keep and in what order they should go after you've had some time to write. Eventually a blog post will appear. Trust me on this.
You know how I know? How do you think I came up with this?
Sometimes things go according to plan, and sometimes we are JUST in time!
As we are jauntily working our way through our second full week, sometimes we have to remember to give ourselves grace with our A to Z posts. It's great when you have every post scheduled and up at midnight on each day, but it's equally okay if you're posting at 11:59pm, or... catching up when you are juggling all the joyful (and maybe not joyful) aspects of your life.
We hope that you are enjoying your A to Z journey and whether your posts are jingly or jetlagged, we're excited to read more!
~Jayden R. Vincente
Let’s have some fun! Unscramble these words that start with the letter z:
We hope you’ve had a great time with the A to Z Challenge! Get ready to write your Reflections about the month. Reflections will be open May 3rd-8th, and then the Road Trip will open on May 10th where you link up to your one favorite post of your own!
Looking forward to seeing you then!
And if you fill out our survey that opens tomorrow, the answer key to today’s puzzle is at the end!
Give yourself an ultimatum (don’t accept them from anyone else!). Use that ultimatum to challenge yourself to do the best you can as we get close to finishing out A to Z! We have one more week. Set your ultimatum to help yourself achieve your goals!
As we end the week, I’m specifically talking to those of you (myself included) who haven’t quite made our goals yet. Give yourself an ultimatum to meet those goals.
Meet that goal OR ____ [fill in the blank]. What happens? Give yourself some consequences. Or better yet, give yourself a reward!
If I don’t finish my goal, I don’t get to go on a shopping spree at a book store!
Then work toward it. Figure out what’s motivating to you and set your mind to it! With just 5 posts left, we can do it! Don’t give up now.
As we start to wind down (only six more posts to go!), what Takeaways do you have from this year’s A to Z? Have you challenged yourself in new and interesting ways? Have you done anything you’re particularly proud of? Share with us in the comments what your Takeaways are so far!
Then get ready to share your Reflections in a couple of weeks. Our Reflections officially open on May 3rd, and brainstorming your Takeaways is a good starting point for that. If nothing comes to mind, look back to our bonus challenges and see if you can squeeze one in this final week.
- Blogging is so much easier and so much more fun when you share the load. Bringing on a co-blogger in January has been the best decision I ever made, writing-wise.
- A to Z is a lot more fun the years I had pre-scheduled all my posts. I feel like it’s been a struggle to go out looking for new blogs, but I did manage to do that some this month. I’m very much looking forward to May and the Road Trip (which officially opens on May 10th). If you aren’t familiar, the Road Trip is when you post the link to ONE of your A to Z posts that you want people to go back and read. It’s a lot of fun, even if we are going back and reading something from a month prior.
- I need a challenge to achieve my goals. Just having a vague goal isn’t enough of a motivator. During a sprint, I can write so much more than just setting a timer for myself.
- I am a social creature. I am desperate to be back into normal socializing patterns. It’s coming! Sooon!
Think about the challenges you have set for yourself this month. We’re just over the halfway point in the month. Have you given up? Are you still working toward your goal?
If you’re making good progress on your challenges, great! Tell us about it in the comments.
If you’ve given up, think about how you could restart your personal challenge or adapt it to fit in the second half of the month. It’s never too late to get back up and try again!
My first A to Z was abysmal. I think I finished finally in June(?), but I never gave up. I kept going. I started my blog just so I could participate in the A to Z Challenge. That whole year, I had only 155 visitors to my blog. Just five years later, I have had 858 visitors in 2021 SO FAR, and we’re only 1/4 of the way through the year. Posting consistently and visiting other blogs has made all the difference.
But all that time, I never gave up. I kept going. I posted whenever I could. And in the end, it has paid off. The moral of the story is NEVER GIVE UP. Keep trying! And let us know how it’s going for you in the comments.
When I first mentioned to my co-blogger, Richard, that I was writing a post for H for the A to Z Blog, he suggested H is for Hustler. The more I thought about it, the more it made sense to me. It's a word I'm familiar with, certainly, but putting a definition down on paper was difficult. So, I went to dictionary.com for a little help.
1. An enterprising person determine to succeed; go-getter.
2. Slang. A person who employs fraudulent or unscrupulous methods to obtain money; swindler.
3. Informal. An expert gambler or game player who seeks out challengers, especially unsuspecting amateur ones, in order to win money from them.
Ah yes, the last one. That's what made me think of that word in connection with our gambling theme for 2021. But then I had a new, related inspiration, courtesy of the first definition of hustler:
1. To proceed or work rapidly or energetically.
2. To push or force one's way; jostle or shove.
Recently, several of us here at A to Z experienced situations that left us scrambling to get things done on a deadline (including me making this post only a couple days beforehand, when usually I'm done before April starts). It's great to work with a team who can hustle when they need to, and which is not filled with hustlers (definition 3), but rather hustlers (definition 1). The A to Z Team is a great one, and I'm proud to be a part of it.
I have always been fascinated by card tricks. I learned a couple as a kid that have stuck with me, but in honor of our A to Z theme, I thought learning a card trick would be a fun game to play. I'll be sure to impress the few people I can show it to! But, I assure you that it's a beginner level card trick and you should give it a try!
Now that you've learned something fun, a few reminders on behalf of the A to Z Team:
B is for Bet!
Have you made a bet with yourself for April yet?